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Proposed Deal with Iran Not Legal

Peter Huessy, Gatestone Institute 

March 23, 2015

The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) forbids any of its non-nuclear armed signatories to have nuclear weapons. Full stop. The P5+1 have been attempting to amend the NPT without going through the process established by the NPT itself — and attempting to do this for just one of its 190 signatories: Iran. Under the terms of the NPT, the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, plus Germany) have no legal authority to amend the treaty unilaterally, to abrogate the treaty, or to allow nations that are signatories to the NPT to abrogate the treaty. The NPT can only be changed through a review conference of all parties. All changes agreed to after that must be consented to by the signatory nations, according to their own legal requirements.

The rules, therefore, ever since the U.S. Senate consented to the treaty in 1969, are that the Senate would have to approve any change to the treaty. Otherwise, any nation that is a signatory to the NPT could say that it is no longer bound by the terms of the agreement and decide to have their own nuclear weapons capability — as many have already stated they might do, starting with Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.

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